I thought that this was a fun play item that they would actually enjoy using for a long time considering most other toys are usually played with for a mere week before they move onto a different toy. I was right, and the children did want to draw and paint with the Aquadoodle after the first week.
However, after only a week, the mat was no longer as functional as it once was. There would be a delay before drawing would show up and sometimes the markings would not show up were faint. I checked to see if it was the pen or paint brush that was not working correctly, but they seemed to be fine, so I concluded that the mat was the issue.
I looked at the Aquadoodle (Spinmaster) website to see if I could get some further information on the product and there was a customer service phone number readily available so I gave them a call. Unfortunately, the person who answered the call couldn't really help me. She suggested that the mat was perhaps folded up and stored away while it was still wet and this may have been the cause for the mat to be performing this way. This didn't really solve the issue since our Aquadoodle Mat was always stored flat on the table in the playroom, and never folded up.
I'm not sure if the Aquadoodle Classic Mat was just not meant to last or if we just happened to get one that was defective, but I certainly will not take the chance of finding out by purchasing another one. I think I will stick with the traditional paper and pencil crayons or markers from now on. They are always reliable and cost a lot less. Lol.